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Can You Do Graphic Design From Your Phone?

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Written by

Kristian F.

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Published on

Jul 18, 2022

Most people in one way or another once needed to design or edit some kind of graphic, whether it's for a school project, website, or even a client, but got stuck because they didn't own an adequate desktop computer for the job.


But, you know how the famous saying goes,


"where there's a will, there's a way."

Nowadays, most people have at least one smartphone, which means that they can easily and quickly complete most graphic design projects using only their mobile phones.


using phones for graphic design and creative apps like adobe illustrator adobe photoshop canva adobe express as a professional graphic designer

Developers like Adobe have adapted most of their flagship desktop programs to the same or similar extent for most smartphones available today on google play and app store or other mobile app markets.


A great thing about these apps is that most of them have a syncing feature that allows you to have your designs saved and opened across all of your devices. This allows anyone to not only have top-quality graphic design tools but also have the comfort of portability.



What kind of mobile phone do I need for Graphic Design?


Many make the mistake of thinking that they need a super expensive phone or tablet to start designing, but in reality, all you need to start designing is a normal everyday smartphone that is compatible with the graphic design apps you're looking to use.


But, even though most modern smartphones can run "most" creative programs for phones, you should keep in mind that having a phone that satisfies at least the minimum requirements for your program of choice is suggested for the best experience.


If you're looking to purchase a smartphone that can easily run most graphic design apps I suggest you check out the minimum/recommended requirements set by the app developer before making the final decision.


Also, having a phone that can quickly and easily run most graphic design apps isn't always in the hardware, but in the quality or version of the operating system your device uses. I suggest you make sure that the most recent version of your operating system is running on your device (Android 7 or newer / iOS 10 or newer) to avoid any compatibility issues.



The Best Free Graphic Design Apps


Below is my list of the top free graphic design apps you can download right now on your Android or Apple smartphone:


- Canva

- Sketchbook

- Adobe Capture

- Adobe Express

- Adobe Photoshop Mix


If you haven't already, give these apps a try! I am sure that most of them will blow your mind with the quality and amount of features they provide.



The set-up process


Most of the apps listed above are pretty easy and self-explanatory to set up, but some require a bit more knowledge before you can get the results you need.


For example, all Adobe programs will require you to sign up either with your Adobe ID, Facebook, or Google account. Once you're logged in you'll be greeted with some personalization options, guides, and tips, but once you're past all that, you'll be able to start with your project.


Apps like Canva and Adobe Express have premade templates that you can use for your creative projects like designing a Flyer, Social Media posts, logo design, and much more.


canva templates and design freebies for tablet and mobile graphic design projects illustration png jpeg svg

If you're using a tablet as your graphic design device, I would suggest you get a stylus (design pen for displays) as it can increase the accuracy of drawing, and depending on which stylus you get (I would recommend you get the Apple Pencil or if you're using an Android device, something like Adonit Dash 4 would do just fine), additional features and functionality.



Drawbacks of using a smartphone for Graphic Design


As convenient as it can be, using a phone for graphic design comes with some unfortunate drawbacks for those who are looking to take their design game to the next level (professional graphic designers).


Some of the compromises you have to make when doing graphic design on your phone are accuracy, speed, tool options, display size, and app/software variety. I am sure most professional designers would have a few more drawbacks in their mind but the ones I mentioned are definitely the most noticeable when comparing PC to Mobile.


Also, most designers I know (Including myself) prefer to use double or even triple monitor setups for maximum productivity which you just can't have with a phone or tablet...


Lastly, a drawback you might not think of at first when you start using your phone for graphic design is back pain and eye problems. Sitting in front of a computer for hours every day is bad for your eyes already, so doing the same with a little phone screen will definitely increase those problems by a large margin.



Conclusion


Generally, if you're a seasoned designer with a lot of experience in graphic design, any tool (whether it's for the PC or Mobile) can be useful and bring quality results.


But, if you're just looking to quickly and easily create simple but beautiful vector graphics, It is definitely possible from the comfort of your phone.